A couple years ago I moved my studio from one part of the house to another and did some serious downsizing. Nearly half of the stuff left the building. A very liberating experience. The other half sat in waiting for a bit while I attended to other matters. Once I was able to get back to the task of putting things together it was a much easier process. Truthfully organization is a very natural skill for me. It helps me center, focus and can be used as a great distractor. Sometimes when I’m deep into another re-organization I have to stop and ask myself what it is that I’m avoiding.
Currently, my studio is nicely organized with good work flow, tools and accessories easily at hand and supplies sorted into neat piles. The piles are a problem. They seem to be growing and moving about. I thought “use what’s here” was my standard operating procedure but as I look around I can see that I haven't been paying attention. There are still way too many possibilities.
Once a month — fill one bag for the thrift shop, one for the Textile Center Garage Sale and complete or toss one unfinished project. Pay attention every day and maintain a written journal. (Rules will be printed and posted.)
This week I attended a very special 93rd birthday celebration for my dear friend Gini. Gini Corrick is one of the most generous, creative loving women I have ever known. She is a wearable artist, a work of art and an inspiration. When hanging out with Gini a certain standard is expected — “You’re an artist Susan, therefore you must always present yourself as such.” She has taught me so much.
So sticking to my “use what you have” rule I went on a scavenger hunt through my closet and studio. Here’s what I found:
- A dress I wore to my son’s wedding two years ago. Sewn from my own pattern and my hand dyed silk.
- A loose fitting wrap. Made from wool suiting that I dyed. Sewn using a pattern from my sellable line of work.
- The hat was in a box of “hats with possibilities”. I wrapped a silk scarf from the thrift store around it and attached a stunning ribbon and feather pin. The pin is a gift from Gini. She purchased it in Paris.
- The necklace was found in a box of “I love it” vintage jewelry buried in the bottom of the cupboard.
- The hand beaded bracelet is a gift from another artist/friend that I wear with everything.
- The shoes were retrieved from the thrift store bag. I sometimes revisit here, just in case.
It was a wonderful exercise. I felt quite elegant and rather accomplished.